By Travis M. Smith | KBEC Sports
The fourth-ranked Waxahachie Runnin’ Indians downright outplayed visiting No. 12 San Antonio Wagner on Friday evening.
They pulled off the 71-48 win without leading scorers and seniors CJ Noland and Montez Young Jr. Noland and Young are out with injuries and are eyeing returns as soon as the end of next week.
Jalen Lake (Colorado State-signee) scored eight of his team-high 13 points in the second half to lead (5-2) Waxahachie inside Michael Key Turner Gymnasium.
Prince Banks and Vzarion Roberson both scored nine points, Jordan Davis and DJ Pigord added eight, and Kambren Drummer and Darkaun King tallied seven, respectively. Christian O’Donnell (6 points) and Jacob Watson (4) also chipped in for the Runnin’ Indians.
Jasean Jackson did his best to keep Wagner in the game, pouring in a game-high 30 points. Unfortunately for the Thunderbirds, Jackson (6-foot-1, University of Texas at Rio Grande Valley-commit) was the lone (1-3) Wagner player to score more than five points.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Waxahachie built a 22-11 first-quarter lead behind three three-pointers and four points by O’Donnell.
The Runnin’ Indians still led by double-digits, 25-15, as the second-quarter clock ran under five minutes to play.
With the Runnin’ Indians leading, 32-17, with 2:24 to play in the first half, a Wagner turnover nearly resulted in an easy Waxahachie bucket in the low post, only to have the officials wave it off on an offensive foul.
Roberson and Lake kept the Waxahachie offense churring on the next two possession, however, drilling a straightaway three and then a deep two-pointer from the left elbow extended, respectively. Both of the shots were contested.
Waxahachie ultimately led 38-23 at the end of the first half.
King got the Waxahachie scoring started in the second half with a put-back basket from the left block. The sophomore forward recorded a pair of offensive rebounds before finishing the bucket.
The Runnin’ Indians led 46-23 with 6:05 to play in the third quarter. That lead increased to 53-28 after yet another Lake midrange jumper roughly four minutes later.
Waxahachie led Wagner, 55-31, at the end of the third quarter.
Waxahachie’s Roberson began the final frame with a nifty ball fake from just inside the free throw and his back to the goal. He then turned to his left and tickled the twine on a fadeaway jumper to extend the Waxahachie lead to 57-31.
The lead expanded to 62-35 with under five minutes to play in the fourth quarter. That was when O’Donnell drove the lane on a fast break after a Wagner turnover. He absorbed a tough foul and got the bucket to go.
The Runnin’ Indians built their lead to 30 points, 68-38, as the clock ran toward the final three minutes. The fourth-ranked team in Class 6A ultimately cruised home to a 71-48 home victory.
The Runnin’ Indians will continue their non-district slate against St. Marks, a prep academy, at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 17.
The Lions are led by Harrison Ingram (6-foot-7, forward), who recently committed to Stanford. Ingram is the top-ranked player in Texas in the Class of 2021 and ranked 11th nationally by 247Sports.
Waxahachie will then face yet another state-ranked opponent in 5A No. 7 (7-0) Amarillo. Tipoff is scheduled for 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 19, inside the MKT.
Thus far, Waxahachie has faced No. 15 Lewisville, 5A No. 1 Lancaster, No. 6 Richardson, No. 3 McKinney and No. 12 Wagner, as well as state-ranked prep schools iSchool of Lewisville and John Paul II.
Travis M. Smith, @Travis5mith